Like the standard chart builders the gadget builder provides a separate page for formatting tasks. Figure 18‑18 shows an example of the Format Gadget page displaying the general properties for a linear gauge.
Figure 18‑18 A linear gauge and its general formatting properties
Format Gadget lists formatting properties of each visual part of a gadget. As Figure 18‑18 shows, for a linear gauge, you can format its scale, needle, numbers, regions, ticks, thresholds, and so on. Each gadget has a different set of formatting properties, which change specific aspects of the gadget’s appearance.
General properties
The general properties of a gadget control overall appearance, such as color scheme, background and border style, and whether animation is enabled. General properties can also define the radius of a cylinder, the needle position of a linear gauge, or the start and end angles of a meter gauge. For example, Figure 18‑19 shows how changing the Radius, Height, and Viewing Angle properties affects the view of a cylinder gadget. Radius and Height values are expressed as percentages of the gadget area.
Figure 18‑19 Examining results of setting properties for a cylinder
Figure 18‑20 shows examples of setting the Start Angle and End Angle properties to change the shape and orientation of a meter. The examples also show how to use the Outer Radius and Inner Radius properties to set the thickness of the arc in the gauge.
Figure 18‑20 Examining results of setting properties for a meter gadget
Table 18‑4 shows all the general properties and lists the gadgets to which they apply. Some properties appear for only one type of gadget. Other properties are common to multiple types of gadgets.
Scale properties
Scale properties define the range of values and the number of tick marks that a gadget displays. The scale properties affect the numbers displayed on the gadget, not its size. Minimum Value and Maximum Value specify the lowest and highest numbers, respectively. If the data set value (represented by the needle value) is lower than the minimum value or higher than the maximum value, the minimum or maximum value is ignored.
Figure 18‑21 shows scale properties set for a linear gauge.
Figure 18‑21 A linear gauge and its scale formatting properties
Table 18‑5 shows all the scale properties and lists the gadgets to which they apply.
 Property Gadget Usage Auto Adjust Tickmarks All but sparkline Enables or disables tick marks created evenly across the scale Major Tickmarks Count All but sparkline Specifies the number of major tick marks to display on the scale Maximum Value All Sets the highest value of the scale Minimum Value All Sets the lowest value of the scale Minor Tickmarks Count All but sparkline Specifies the number of minor tick marks to display between major tick marks
Needle properties
Needle properties define the shape, size, and color of a needle. A needle points to a data value and appears only in a linear gauge and in a meter gauge. Figure 18‑22 shows the needle properties set for a meter gauge.
Figure 18‑22 Selecting options for the needle of a meter gauge gadget
For a meter gauge, the needles properties apply only to the pointer part of the needle. To format the base, or pivot, of the needle (represented by the circle), choose Needle Base/Pivot.
Table 18‑6 shows all the needle properties and lists the gadgets to which they apply.
 Property Gadget Usage Base Width Meter Sets the size of the bottom part of the needle, as a percent of the size of the gadget. Border Color Linear gauge, meter Sets the border color of the needle. Border Width Linear gauge, meter Sets the thickness of the needle border. Fill Background Color Meter Sets the background color of needle. Fill Color Linear gauge Sets the interior color of the needle. Rear Extension Meter Sets the size of the portion of the needle behind the pivot as a percent of the size of the gadget. Shape Linear gauge Sets the shape of the needle. Show Value Meter Enables or disables the display of the value to which the needle points. Size Linear gauge, meter Sets the size in pixels, or in percent of gadget width, of the needle. Tooltip Linear gauge, meter Specifies text for the tooltip. Top Width Meter Sets the size of the tip of the needle as a percent of the size of the gadget. Value Linear gauge, meter Sets which needle to format. Several needles can co-exist, based on the data used to create the gadget. Value Textbox X Co-ordinate Meter Sets the x coordinate of the value text, as a percent of gadget width. Value Textbox Y Co-ordinate Meter Sets the y coordinate of the value text, as a percent of gadget height.
Needle base or pivot properties
Needle base or pivot properties define the appearance of a needle base, or pivot. Drawn as a circle, the base is the point around which the needle rotates. A needle base appears only for a meter gauge. Figure 18‑23 shows the needle base properties set for a meter gauge. The size of the needle base is larger than the default size, and the fill color is set to a radial gradient.
Figure 18‑23 Selecting options for the needle base of a meter gauge
Table 18‑7 shows all the needle base or pivot properties. These properties are used only in a meter gauge.
 Property Usage Border Color Sets the border color of the needle base. Border Thickness Sets the width of the needle base border. End Color Sets the ending color to use in a fill gradient. Fill Color Sets the interior color of the needle base to a solid color. Fill Gradient Sets the interior color of the needle base to a color gradient. Pattern Specifies the pattern of the fill gradient. Choose Radial or Linear. Rotation Sets the angle of a linear fill gradient. Show Border Displays or hides the border around the needle base. Size Sets the size of the needle base as a percent of the meter radius. Start Color Sets the starting color to use in a fill gradient.
Number formatting properties
Number formatting properties define how numbers are displayed in a gadget. Use these properties to abbreviate numbers, to add text before or after a number, or to specify the number of digits to display after a decimal point. Figure 18‑24 shows the number formatting properties set for a bullet gauge. Numbers display with the dollar symbol (\$) before the number and they appear in abbreviated format, such as \$30K instead of \$30,000.
Figure 18‑24 Examining a bullet gadget and its number formatting properties
Table 18‑8 shows all the number formatting properties. These properties are used in all the gadgets.
 Property Usage Auto Abbreviation Abbreviates a number to an appropriate number factor. For example, 10,000 becomes 10K. Force Trailing Zeros Enables or disables the display of trailing zeros after the decimal point. Format Numbers Enables and disables number formatting. Fraction Digits Specifies the number of digits displayed after the decimal point. Prefix Specifies a text value to display before a number. Suffix Specifies a text value to display after a number.
Region properties
Region properties enable the division of the data plot into regions. Use regions to provide more information about values in a gadget. Compare the linear gauges in the following figures. The gauge in Figure 18‑25 does not show regions. The gauge in Figure 18‑26 displays three regions, labeled Fair, Good, and Excellent.
Figure 18‑25 Linear gauge without regions
Figure 18‑26 Linear gauge with three regions
Figure 18‑27 shows the properties set for the region labeled Fair in Figure 18‑26.
Figure 18‑27 Properties specified for a region labeled Fair
Table 18‑9 shows all region properties and lists the gadgets to which they apply.
 Property Gadget Usage Color Linear gauge, meter, bullet Specifies the color of the region. End Value Linear gauge, meter, bullet Specifies where the region ends. Label Linear gauge, meter, bullet Specifies the name of the region. Region Linear gauge, meter, bullet Chooses the region for which the settings apply. You can also add or remove a region from the list. Show Labels Linear gauge Display or hide the region labels. Start Value Linear gauge, meter, bullet Specifies where the region starts.
Tick properties
Tick properties define the size, color, and position of tick marks on a gadget. Figure 18‑28 shows the tick properties set for a linear gauge. Tick marks appear at the top and inside the gauge. The first and last tick values display Min and Max instead of numbers.
Figure 18‑28 Format Gadget displaying a linear gauge and its tick properties
Table 18‑10 shows all the tick properties and lists the gadgets to which they apply.
 Property Gadget Usage Major Tick Marks Color Linear gauge, meter, bullet, cylinder, thermometer Sets the color of major tick marks. Major Tick Marks Height Linear gauge, meter, bullet, cylinder, thermometer Sets the height of major tick marks. Major Tick Marks Width Linear gauge, meter, bullet, cylinder, thermometer Sets the width of major tick marks. Maximum Label Linear gauge, meter, bullet, cylinder, thermometer Sets the highest tick mark value. Text replaces the numeric value. Minimum Label Linear gauge, meter, bullet, cylinder, thermometer Sets the lowest tick mark value. Text replaces the numeric value. Minor Tick Marks Color Linear gauge, meter, bullet, cylinder, thermometer Sets the color of minor tick marks. Minor Tick Marks Height Linear gauge, meter, bullet, cylinder, thermometer Sets the height of minor tick marks. Minor Tick Marks Width Linear gauge, meter, bullet, cylinder, thermometer Sets the width of minor tick marks. Position Above Linear gauge, bullet Sets tick marks to appear above the gadget. Position Below Linear gauge, bullet Sets tick marks to appear below the gadget. Position Left Cylinder, thermometer Positions tick marks on the left side of the gadget. Position Right Cylinder, thermometer Positions tick marks on the right side of the gadget. Show Limits Value Linear gauge, meter, bullet, cylinder, thermometer Enables or disables the display of the first and last values. Show Tick Marks Linear gauge, meter, bullet, cylinder, thermometer Enables or disables the display of tick marks on the gadget. Show Tick Values Linear gauge, meter, bullet, cylinder, thermometer Enables or disables the display of values on tick marks. Ticks Inside Linear gauge, meter Sets tick marks to appear inside or outside of the gadget. Values Inside Linear gauge, meter Sets tick mark values to appear inside or outside of the gadget.
Threshold properties
Threshold properties define thresholds, which you use to identify meaningful values. For example, in a linear gauge that displays a sales total, you can add a threshold that identifies the target sales amount, as shown in Figure 18‑29. By displaying this threshold value, the gauge shows whether the actual sales total is over or under the sales target.
Figure 18‑29 also shows the threshold properties set to create the threshold. You can specify a label, create a threshold line or a threshold zone, specify a threshold value or range of values, and format the line and marker. You can create multiple thresholds for a gadget.
Figure 18‑29 Examining a linear gauge and its threshold properties
Table 18‑11 shows all the threshold properties and lists the gadgets to which they apply.
 Property Gadget Usage Arc Inner Radius Meter Specifies the inner radius of arc for the threshold area Arc Outer Radius Meter Specifies the outer radius of arc for the threshold area Border Color Linear gauge, meter Sets the border color of the threshold marker Color Linear gauge, meter, sparkline, bullet Sets the color of the threshold area on the gadget End Value Linear gauge, meter, sparkline Sets the end value of the threshold zone Label Linear gauge, meter Specifies the text to apply to the threshold Length Bullet Specifies the length of the threshold as a percent of gadget size Line Style Linear gauge, meter, sparkline Sets the line style of the threshold Marker Color Linear gauge, meter Sets the color of the threshold marker Radius Linear gauge Sets the size of the threshold marker Show as Zone Sparkline Enables or disables display of the threshold as a zone Show Border Meter Enables or disables display of a border around the threshold Show Marker Linear gauge, meter Enables or disables display of the marker on the threshold Show Threshold Sparkline, bullet Enables or disables display of the threshold Show Label Meter Enables or disables display of the threshold value Show Label Inside Meter Displays value inside or outside of the arc on the gadget Show Label on Top Linear gauge Enables or disables display of the threshold value Size Meter Sets the size of the threshold marker Start Value Linear gauge, meter, sparkline Sets start value of the threshold zone Threshold Linear gauge, meter Sets which threshold the settings affect Threshold Line/Threshold Zone Linear gauge, meter Sets whether the threshold is a single line or a zone Tooltip Linear gauge, meter Sets tooltip text for the marker on the threshold Width Sparkline, bullet Sets the width of the threshold
Anchor properties
Anchor properties control the shape, size, color, and visibility of markers, or anchors, in a sparkline gadget. Unlike other gadgets that display only one or two data values, a sparkline gadget plots multiple values and, by default, uses anchors to highlight the first, last, lowest, and highest values. Figure 18‑30 shows the anchor properties set for a sparkline gadget.
Figure 18‑30 Examining a sparkline gadget and its anchor properties
Table 18‑12 shows all the anchor properties. These properties are used only in a sparkline gadget.
 Setting Usage Shape Sets the shape of the anchors. Size Sets the size of the anchor in pixels. Visibilities Sets the visibility and color of the anchors. Open, Close, High, and Low anchors are visible by default. To display anchors for all the other values, select Other Anchors.
Plot properties
Plot properties control the appearance of elements in the data plot area of bullet and sparkline gadgets. For a bullet gadget, you can add a border around the gadget or a shadow below it. You can also specify whether to display the value label and whether to display the value indicator as a line or as a dot.
For a sparkline gadget, you can specify whether to display the first, last, lowest, or highest values, change the color and width of the data line, and add bars in the background to represent period blocks. For example, if a sparkline displays daily stock quotes over a year, you can show period blocks that have a length of 3 to divide the stock values into quarters. The value of 3 assumes that each quarter has three months.
For example, Figure 18‑31 shows the preview of a sparkline gadget. The gadget displays period bars where each period contains three values. Alternate bars appear in color.
Figure 18‑32 shows the plot properties specified for the plot that appears in the sparkline gadget example shown in Figure 18‑31.
Figure 18‑32 Examining the plot properties for a sparkline gadget
Table 18‑13 shows all the plot properties.
 Property Gadget Usage Border Bullet Enables or disables the border around the gadget. Border Color Bullet Sets the color of the border around the gadget. Border Width Bullet Sets the thickness of the border around the gadget. Line Color Sparkline Sets the color of the plot line. Line Width Sparkline Sets the thickness of the plot line. Period Bars Color Sparkline Sets the color of the period bars. The color is applied to alternate bars. Period Bars Length Sparkline Sets the number of values that each period bar highlights. Show as Dot Bullet Enables or disables the display of the value indicator as a dot instead of a solid line. Show Close Value Sparkline Enables and disables the display of the close value. Show High and Low Values Sparkline Enables and disables the display of the high and low values. Show Open Value Sparkline Enables and disables the display of the open value. Show Period Bars Sparkline Enables and disables the display of period bars. Show Shadow Bullet Enables or disables the appearance of a shadow below the gadget. Show Value Label Bullet Enables or disables the display of the value on the gadget.
Value indicator properties
Value indicator properties control the size, color, and border of the value indicator in a bullet gadget, as shown in Figure 18‑33.
Figure 18‑33 Examining a bullet gadget and its value indicator properties
Table 18‑14 shows the value indicator properties. These properties are used only in a bullet gadget.
 Property Gadget Usage Border Color Bullet Sets the color of the border Border Width Bullet Sets the thickness of the border Color Bullet Sets the color of the value indicator Show Border Bullet Enables or disables a border around the value indicator Width Bullet Sets the value indicator width as a percent of the plot thickness
Tooltip properties
Tooltip properties control the visibility and appearance of tooltips in a gadget. A tooltip displays a data value when the mouse pointer is placed over a value marker. Figure 18‑34 shows a meter gadget that displays a tooltip and the properties set for the tooltip.
Figure 18‑34 Format Gadget displaying a meter gadget and its tooltip properties
Table 18‑15 shows the tooltip properties. These properties are available to all the gadgets.
 Property Usage Show Tooltip Enables and disables the display of a tooltip Background Sets the background color for the tooltip Border Sets the border color for the tooltip
Font properties
Font properties define the type, size, and color of the font used for any text in a gadget. Table 18‑16 shows the font properties. These properties are available to all the gadgets.
 Property Usage Font Specifies the name of the font Size Specifies the font size in points Color Specifies the color of the text
Padding and margin properties support the addition of space on all sides of a gadget, between a title and the plot, and between a data value and the plot. Compare the sparkline gadgets in Figure 18‑35 and Figure 18‑36. The gadget in Figure 18‑35 uses default values for all the padding and margin properties.